Easy Lemon Rice

5 from 8 votes
12 Comments

This post may contain affiliate links. See our disclosure policy.

Lemon Rice is a fragrant, zesty, and oh so easy side dish! Simple yet savory, fast yet flavorful, this rice recipe will become a favorite in your family!

Lemon rice in a white bowl topped with lemon slices

Easy Lemon Rice

Move over, plain white rice! This Lemon Rice recipe will become your new go-to side dish for just about anything. I spent years serving boring rice to my family before discovering that adding a few simple pantry staples takes ordinary rice from bland to brilliant in no time! It’s not just healthy; it’s absolutely divine! It goes perfectly with Greek chicken, pork, shrimp, veggies, beef or lamb kabobs, or just on its own. The delicate lemon flavor pairs beautifully with simple spices that give off not only a glorious flavor, but savory aroma as well. Enhance your dining experience right in your own kitchen with this decadent yet simple long grain side dish.

Ingredients in Lemon Rice

This rice has a beautiful Mediterranean flair, yet only uses easy to find, simple ingredients. Here’s all you need:

  • White rice – you can use any long grain rice you like, or basmati rice.
  • Water – you can use chicken broth to add more flavor, or add a tablespoon of butter to your boiling water.
  • Olive oil – substitute avocado oil or peanut oil if you like.
  • Fresh lemon juice – I use the juice of two fresh lemons, or you can use bottled lemon juice.
  • Garlic cloves – crushed or minced
  • Ginger – just a pinch of dried ginger or zest some fresh ginger into the rice mixture
  • ​Salt and pepper to taste

Additions and Substitutions to Lemon Rice

This easy rice recipe can be dressed up dozens of ways! Make it differently every time and your family will never get bored with rice for dinner. Here are a few ideas to add flavor to your grains:

  • For extra crunch, stir in a handful of your favorite nuts: slivered almonds, pecans or cashews.
  • Throw in some raisins for a delicious texture and flavor.
  • For added flavor, try spicing things up with red chilies, curry leaves, chili powder, turmeric, fresh dill, parsley or mustard seeds
  • No need to complicate the rice cooking process. Prepare your rice as you normally would, in a rice cooker, instant pot or on the stove top. Then add the extra ingredients as directed in the recipe card below.
  • For an even creamier texture, I’ve seen recipes where the rice is cooked in broth and milk instead of water. The milk gives the rice a soft, creamy texture and flavor. I’ve never tried it in this particular recipe, but it’s next on my list!
  • For a more authentic Indian flavor, add cilantro, curry powder (about half a teaspoon) or diced green chiles.
  • Garnish with thin lemon slices and cilantro.
lemon rice in a white bowl topped with lemon slices

FAQs

What kind of rice should I use?

You can use white, brown, long grain or short grain rice with this recipe. The less starchy the rice, the better though, because you’ll want the rice grains to be separate rather then clumpy. This rice tastes much better without a mushy texture.

What if I don’t have fresh lemons?

Fresh squeezed lemon juice is best, but you can easily substitute bottled lemon juice too; it still gives off that fragrant lemony flavor and aroma. In a pinch, lime juice can be used too.

How Long will Leftovers Last?

Keep leftover rice in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to three days. You can freeze this rice in a freezer bag for up to a month. Reheat by placing in the microwave until warm.

What to Serve with Lemon Rice

This rice is delicious on its own or with any Indian or Greek style recipe. Here are a few of our favorites:

Lemon rice in a white bowl topped with lemon slices

Easy Lemon Rice

5 from 8 votes
Easy Lemon Rice is a fragrant, zesty, and oh so easy side dish! Simple yet savory, fast yet flavorful, this rice recipe will become a favorite in your family!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 10

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Cook rice in a rice cooker or according to package directions.
    Cooked rice in an Instant Pot
  • Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl.
    Lemon sauce in a small glass bowl
  • Pour the sauce slowly over rice while fluffing with a fork.
    Lemon sauce being poured onto rice
  • Serve and garnish with cilantro and lemon slices.
    Lemon rice in a white bowl topped with lemon slices

Nutrition Information

Calories: 300kcalCarbohydrates: 57gProtein: 5gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 4mgPotassium: 82mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin C: 0.2mgCalcium: 22mgIron: 0.6mg

Did you try this recipe?

Share It on Instagram!

Mention @favoritefamilyrecipes or tag #favoritefamilyrecipes!

Share This With the World

PinYummly

About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her beautiful three girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

More about Erica Walker

Similar Recipes

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

How many stars would you give this recipe?




Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Super delicious!! Made boring rice into something spectacular with so few ingredients!!! I always love lemon on my chicken cutlets and this makes such a great side!! 10000% will make again!! Thank you!!!

    1. Yes, that is correct. We use it as a side dish. If you are using it as a main dish, you’ll want to make more.

  2. 5 stars
    I’ve never tried lemon rice. I am so intrigued and can’t wait to try it. The flavors sound amazing!

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe is so timely. My husband was just asking if maybe I could flavor the rice we eat quite a bit. Thanks so much!

  4. 5 stars
    This was so simple, yet so delicious! I garnished a few sliced almonds and parsley and served it with baked salmon! Thanks.